Skip to main content

The Challenge

Mission

Teams are challenged to incorporate knowledge of teambuilding, space exploration, and the engineering design process to build a Mars Rover using LEGOs® AND present the Rover in eight different areas at an Engineering Design Competition. If your team does not have full intentions of attending a competition, you should NOT be participating in the Idaho TECH program. 

Teams will:

  • Learn about teambuilding skills, space exploration, and the engineering design process using the Idaho TECH provided Activities and other instruction from teachers, parents, and/or mentors.
  • Apply knowledge and skills learned from LEGO® building cards and follow Rules & Regulations to create a Rover that meets specific engineering design guidelines, including a rock collection device and rock storage area.
  • Track the engineering design process with a Lab Notebook that is kept during the entire program and includes a timeline, three itemized budgets, day-to-day notes, and individual pie charts.
  • Demonstrate what was learned through verbal and poster presentations at the Engineering Design Competition.

Team

Each team MUST have a teacher sponsor who will be fully responsible for the team, will be provided LEGO® kits, and be the main point of contact for the team. The teacher sponsor can use parent, community, and mentor support to guide the teams through the process during school or through an after-school program.

  • Each team MUST have between 4 and 6 students from 4th, 5th, and/or 6th grade that attend school in the same school district
  • Each team may have up to TWO mentors (7th-12th graders) to assist the team.
  • Each team may have an unlimited amount of parental and community support.

Expenses

Although the Idaho TECH Mars Rover Challenge is sponsored by NASA Idaho Space Grant Consortium, the school is responsible for additional expenses. Please refer to Cost & Registration for details. Many schools rely on community fundraising or company sponsorship to assist with expenses.

  • Registration Fee of $15 for the first team and $5 for each additional team.
  • Poster Budget: no more than $30
  • Mars Rover Budget: no more than $50
  • Travel: varies. Consider busing fee, hotels, meals, etc.
  • Return Lego Kits: Cost to return LEGO® Kits to Idaho State University
  • Optional: materials for activities, team t-shirts, etc.

Supplies

The NASA Idaho Space Grant Consortium provides the following supplies for use during the program. Kits must be returned at the end of the program in the same condition as they were when received.

  • Kit “R” – LEGO® Manufacturing Systems Kit (red container) with buildings cards.
  • Kit “Y” - LEGO® Pneumatics Kit (yellow container) with building cards

Additional supplies for the Mars Rover design must be purchased by the school, and are restricted by the following limitations:

  • In addition to the two provided LEGO® kits, teams are allowed up to $50 in additional LEGO®s and/or items on the “Non-LEGO® Allowable Elements” found in the Idaho TECH Manual.
  • For the Kits RO & YO used in the Twin Falls EDC: Teams may have up to three battery boxes-OR-two motors as part of the Rover design. Teams may NOT use geared-down motors, or any other power source other than the 9-volt simple motors and pneumatics provided to operate the Rover
  • For the Kits RN & YN used in the Pocatello and Moscow EDCs: Teams must use the LEGO Motors Provided. No others will be permissible.

Manual

We strongly recommend that teachers/parents read the entire manual and reach out to idtech@isu.edu with questions and clarifications.

View the entire Idaho TECH Manual

Contact Us

(208) 282-2783

College of Education

921 South 8th Avenue, Stop 8059

Pocatello, Idaho, USA 83209


IDAHO STATE UNIVERSITY

921 South 8th Avenue
Pocatello, Idaho, 83209

Discover opportunity at Idaho State University